European sports teams have long ago given into the whore of sponsorship, by allowing uniforms to become this kind of ridiculousness.
Granted, soccer, or futbol, is not a traditional North American sport, hell we don't even use the right word for it. Its roots are in Europe, where, as Garber states, brand name sponsorship is part of the identity of each of the squads. And not being a traditional North American sport, the MLS has had difficulty in producing a profit. In the first 10 years of the league's existence, it was reported that it had lost a total of $350million. Makes sense then to cash in any way you can, right?
I'll be honest, I really don't care what's on the practice jersey. I don't get to enough training camps to really give a damn. But its just the start, it spreads from there as the dollars roll in, and "we" look at other areas to capitalize. Then it starts small, advertising patches on the shoulder of the game jersey, so as not to overwhelm us.Because when we're building a project in Anchorage, the first thing we need to think is to go Union. This is like the U.S. government advertising the new $20 bill, as if we're going to start using pesos because we don't like the design.
So after one patch, we add another on the other shoulder. And then another, and another, until slowly, but surely, it becomes this...
where players can pop the collar for that extra level of cool.
With the exception of the NFL and maybe the NBA, the MLS and WNBA are cash strapped leagues in need of any resource available to earn an extra buck. We've all heard, and celebrated, the rumors that the NHL is overtaking the NBA in terms of popularity, so for argument's sake, let's say they're roughly at the same level. I find it extremely hard to believe that both the NHL and NBA are in such financial dire straits that they would need to resort to the desecration of the game jersey.
It makes professional sports look amateur.
- This rant all started from Wyshynski's 1 -2 part piece on advertising on uni's, which stemmed from USA Today's original piece. All actual facts and quotes are borrowed from those respectable sources.